From Iceland — Foreign Affairs Minister Bjarni Benediktsson Glitter Bombed — Twice

Foreign Affairs Minister Bjarni Benediktsson Glitter Bombed — Twice

Published December 9, 2023

Photo by
Art Bicnick

Protestors threw red glitter at Foreign Minister Bjarni Benediktsson on December 8 during a meeting marking the 75th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Held at at Veröld – Hús Vigdísar, the schedule of events was to include opening statements by Prime Minister Katrín Jakobsdóttir, with Bjarni speaking to close the event. Shortly before the event began, Katrín announced her absence, requiring Bjarni to step in and deliver the opening remarks.

As soon as the foreign minister walked onstage, a woman approached and tossed red glitter over the minister. At that point, several seated protesters rose, unfurling a banner demanding that Iceland cut all political ties with Israel and impose an embargo for the war in Gaza. When Bjarni tried to take a seat, he was doused with another vial of glitter.

Another protester made a speech, asserting that the silence of the Icelandic government made it complicit in the genocide of the Palestinian people in Gaza. She said Iceland should be ashamed of celebrating the anniversary of the UDHR while human rights are not being protected in Gaza.

Bjarni Benediktsson resigned as Minister of Finance in October, after the parliementary ombudsman declared him unqualified to handle the recent sale of Íslandsbanki shares to private investors. Bjarni took up the position of Foreign Minister in shortly after.

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